First of all, I’d like to thank T-Peos and H20Fidelity for including me in the tour and making this review possible. Now, I’m not going to dwell too much on the accessories, packaging and stuff and go straight on to the sound. For the review, I ran them off my iBasso DX90 and I also used it with the O2, which synergised quite well. On we go with the mini-review then.
The H200 received quite a of praise about how it sounded but I never actually heard it. I was really looking forward to hearing what T-Peos would be able to do with their new flagship. When I first heard it, quite frankly, I was shocked. It was in one word, dreadful. The bass was nice, but everything else just sounded plain wrong and unnatural. Now, over the time I’ve had it I’ve warmed up to it a little, and even considered buying one, but I still don’t think it is an IEM that I can recommend.
If you have been following the tour thread, you will have heard people say that the bass from the H300 is absolutely awesome and I would be lying if I said that they were wrong. The bass is exceptional both in impact and quality. It has a very solid thump to it, but it is still quite fast and it doesn’t ever bleed into the midrange. I would classify the H300 borderline basshead, but it doesn’t quite have as much bass as the DN-1000, but definitely more than the DN-2000. The texture of the bass is very nice as well, being very well extended and having good rumble in the sub-bass. If I had to judge the bass quality of the DN-1000 vs H300, I would easily give it to the H300; the DN-2000 comes closer but I still think the H300’s bass is more detailed and has a more satisfying impact. This was a great start for the H300, but unfortunately, for me, the positive impressions end here.
The midrange hit me hard. It was absolutely not what I was expecting. This is perhaps the part that let me down the most. It is a little bit more recessed than I prefer, which means that you have to turn it up to higher volumes, but then other problems arise such as vocal sibilance and the treble becomes rather unpleasant. I like vocals that are neutral and I don’t mind it they tilt to either side a bit. However, the H300 has an odd upper midrange spike that just makes female vocals sound very unnatural and a little bit nasal. Male vocals are definitely less affected, but at times they can sound a little off too. For me, the midrange either sounds veiled or overly bright (if that even makes sense?) depending on the volume and I just can’t find the sweet spot for me.
Those who have read some of my other reviews will know that I generally tend to like a slightly brighter treble and when I heard that the H300 would have a bright sound signature, I really thought that I would like it. I wished I would say that I loved the treble, but I just can’t. It is overly bright and at higher volumes (around 155 on the DX90) the treble becomes a little piercing and actually hurts my ears. Now, I’m pretty sure that people listen significantly than I do (from meets, I listen at 9-10 for my HM-700 and RE-400 but others were listening at 15) and the treble could be a large problem for them. The treble can actually cover details and on some songs all you can hear in the background are the crashing of cymbals and personally, I just cannot stand this. Unfortunately, the treble is probably the worst part of the H300 and it affects every song I have almost always in a negative way.
Imaging & Soundstage
Finally, something positive to report J. The imaging is quite good, though not quite up there with the DN-2000 yet. It is clear step up from the DN-1000 and it handles most of my tracks with ease, even the ones that the DN-1000 showed signs of congestion. Overall, I am quite impressed with the H300’s imaging. The presentation of the H300 seems to be more up front and aggressive rather than that of the DN series, which seem to be more spacious. It is really had to describe the soundstage, because most of the instruments are in your face, but the vocals are pulled back and there are some tracks where there are segments where there are cymbal clashes further out. There seems to be most of the instruments right in from of you, some space, then some others on the side. The soundstage is quite capable, but I personally prefer the DN-1K & 2K’s soundstage over this, but it’s more of a preference issue. Grado lovers should like this.
Separation & Detail
The separation of the H300 is something that I have to applaud. T-Peos have really done well here. Although the bass is hard hitting, it does not affect the separation one bit. It one of the best areas of the H300. Everything is so clear, and it really does compete with the likes of the Noble 4 and the DN-2000. This a step up over the DN-1000 in terms of separation for sure. Ah, here is something that I’m not entirely sure about. It seems like a very detailed IEM, but not unlike how the DN-1000 masks some of its detail because of its bass, the H300 has a similar issue with its treble. The treble I very emphasized, too emphasized IMO, and it gets in the way quite a lot of the time. The H300 is very capable in terms of detail, if only the treble wasn’t so bright…
From what I’ve heard, the H300 is certainly a very technically capable IEM, but I am left wondering what in the world was the designer thinking when he/she tuned them. It reminds me of the Rhapsodio RDB 2v1 I heard a while back. It was very technically capable, but because of the tuning, it was deemed by me to be the worst IEM I have ever heard. The H300 is a lot better, but I really do wonder what I could have been if it was tuned better.
Pros - Bass, bass, bass. They do also have impressive clarity and detail throughout the spectrum
Cons - Hottttt treble, a bit big and clunky
I've just packed up the H300 loaner ready to send it on its merry way, thanks to H20fidelity for organising this. My impression largely accords with those above, a big V-shaped sound sig, with fantastic bass. The clarity and detail across the spectrum is great too, but the treble is too hot. A couple of folks have said they're like a DBA02 with more bass, that's bang on for me.
Build and aesthetics: Build quality on these is pretty standard, acceptable for the price but nothing spectacular. The housings are big and stick out of your ears like a couple of little corks. I would say they are strictly for audiophiles in this regard, but there are plenty of popular consumer IEMs that are as big so that's probably just me. I found the fit and comfort excellent. I prefer wearing phones cable down, it lets you put them in and out much more easily. They should add a shirt clip though, but having said that I didn't miss it too much. I didn't use any stock tips so can't comment on those. I also didn't try the mic-cable.
I briefly used a pair of silicons then switched to a pair of comply tips with the foam cover on the nozzle. Most of my comments are with the latter.
BASS: I'm an ER-4 type of guy, so the first thing hit my on these was the bass. It's big, deep, detailed and fantastic. The bass is beautifully detailed and controlled, and it does not bleed much at all outside of it's range. The bass is fast and tight and extends very deep. For me personally the bass is a bit too big to be called natural, it's great for something different from time to time but not every day for me. But I'm likely to be in a small minority on that, most will LOVE the bass on these.
MIDS: The mids are surprisingly good given the bass. They have that beautiful thick meaty tonality in the mids that make acoustic instruments sound truly beautiful. But they remain very clear and reasonably flat. You expect the mids to be recessed when you first listen to them because the bass is so prominent, but then when you focus in you're pleasantly surprised. The mids are not completely flat but they're pretty close. I think the mids are actually better than the DBA02, a bit more natural sounding.
TREBLE: Here's where these really fall down for me. With silicons these are hot, hot, hot. People who like the hyper-sparkle of the CK10/DBA02-type will have no problems. But even as someone who likes a bright, fast sound sig, these are too much for me. They are sibilant and harsh to my ears. BUT, once I put the complys on they calmed down a lot, to the point where I didn't bother to EQ them further. If I was using them longer term I might still play with the EQ but they were acceptable with the complys. In that respect I'd say they're superior to the DBA02. They have excellent detail and extension. But even when tamed, they are still a bit harsh and screamy in the treble. I'm not a graph guy but I suppose it's the peak others are talking about.
DETAIL/CLARITY/SEPARATION/SOUNDSTAGE: The H300 are excellent in all these categories. Detail and separation is truly excellent from the very bottom to the very top of the spectrum. Soundstage is excellent, not the best I've heard but no one will have a problem with them in this respect.
Conclusion: There is a lot to like about these, if you like big, deep and tight bass without sacrificing detail and clarity, you may well love them. The treble is hot but with minimal intervention that can be well-tamed.
Pros - Nice look and feel, free inclusion of cable with phone controls
Cons - Slightly imbalanced sound, treble emphasis and slightly recessed lower mids prevents these IEMs from excelling
I am reviewing the H-300s as part of the Australian tour and for that I must say a sincere thanks to @H20Fidelity for coordinating the tour and of course T-PEOS for supplying the tour unit.
Reading previous reviews, the H-300s have received mixed reports so I was looking forward to trying these with equal parts curiosity / doubt and excitement. Every mid-level hybrid IEM I've tried so far has missed the mark by a fraction so I'm still looking for the one that gets it right. Comments from others on the tour had me concerned that the H-300s might have a little too much treble energy, but others still said it wasn't as hot as other offerings on the market so what's my perception? Let's step through the pertinent details...
Design & Accessories
The H-300s are a quality piece of kit with aluminium and steel housings, 2 cables provided in the standard retail setup (one with phone controls and one without) and a nice range of tips including various single and dual flange options plus some foam tips. There's also a nice carry pouch so I'd say the H-300s meet the highest standards for IEM accessories and options - good start.
Fit & Comfort
I was surprised at how large the H-300s were and expected comfort issues, but I'm pleased to re
port that even my somewhat difficult ears were completely fine with the size and shape of the H-300s. They stick out a tiny bit further than some other IEMs, but nothing extreme and I never felt like they wanted to fall out or looked like I had a couple of bolts stuck in my ears like Frankenstein gone wrong.
The H-300s employ a simple DC style connector for their cables meaning that aftermarket cables should be easy enough to make or order. The fact that they provide 2 cables from the factory is outstanding because it allows you to choose to have
phone controls if you want them, but to not deal with the extra weight and cable elements that could catch on clothing, etc. if you don't. Perhaps the most exciting thing about the H-300s cables is that they actually work with non i-devices! The H-300's in-line remote even worked with my Nokia Lumia 920! Please be aware though that it's microphone and play / pause / answer / hang-up only via a single button - no volume control.
The cables are nicely insulated with good Y-splits and strain reliefs so they haven't cut any corners despite providing 2 different options.
As I said earlier, I was so hoping that the H-300 would finally strike the right balance of sound signature for a hybrid. I recently spent time with both the Atomic Floyd Super Darts and the Astrotec AX-60 and loved both in many ways, but couldn't quite get past a couple of factors with the sound of each. Enter the H-300 - was this my saviour?
The bass from the H-300s is smooth and deep. It reminds me of the bass from the beyer T1s in that it's there when it's meant to be, but it's not adding anything or blooming into other areas. This allows the H-300s to be very revealing and transparent, but without enhancing other frequencies (for the most part). Instead of enhancing subtle sounds the H-300 approach is to just get out of their way and I think it results in some special moments.
In terms of bass impact, the H-300 is subtle. The bass is accurate and full, but didn't really wow me with it's impact in the way that something like the Super Darts do. The H-300s are significantly more accurate and true-to-life with their bass presentation though so it's a question of wow factor versus reality - you choose.
The mids from the H-300 are frankly a bit disappointing to me. They're fine. There's nothing wrong with them, but I should be saying more than that at this level (>$300). To my ears there's a hole somewhere in the mids that just prevents the H-300s from ever sounding as magical as they probably should. T-PEOS flat-out nailed realism in the bass and lower mids, but somewhere higher up they've just missed the mark in a way that's not bad - it's just not up to scratch with the incredibly natural and realistic bass.
If I had to put a word to what's wrong I'd say that it's missing weight in the mids. The sounds are all there without any particularly noticeable colouration or emphasis, but the whole picture is just lacking in weight and that makes it all sound a little artificial - I always knew I was listening to a recording and never had a "Whoa, what was that?" moment. By contrast, the AX-60s were able to provide these moments despite some other issues I had with them.
Talk about "so close and yet so far". The H-300s are the first hybrid design I've heard in this general price range that hasn't been too hot in the treble. Other hybrids have literally made me wince from time-to-time, but the H-300s are absolutely fine in terms of sibilance and hot treble. Unfortunately though they still haven't quite hit the mark for my ears.
Similar to the scenario with the mids, there's just something missing with the treble presentation from the H-300s. The treble is slightly enhanced compared to the rest of the frequencies and it leaves the H-300s sounding slightly soul-less to my ears. This could be more about the mids than the treble, but I think both have a degree of interplay that hurts one another. Are the mids to light or is the treble to bright by a fraction? I can't really say, but I know that what I hear from the H-300s is a (very) slightly thin sounding headphone that is in no way offensive or bad, but is also to my ears not special.
As a perfect example, the HiFiMan RE-272 is a notably bass-light earphone. I'd go so far as saying it's a bit anemic at times, but I still love it because it has a certain magic - it's special. So it's not just about getting everything perfect and I feel like maybe the H-300 got quite close to perfect from a simple sound signature perspective, but somehow lost some magic along the way.
Staging & Imaging
The image created by the H-300s is clean and solid, but the stage isn't huge. Clean and coherent, yes, but limited in size to my ears. Once again I feel like I'd choose the AX-60s over the H-300 in this regard despite the fact that the H-300s are a more balanced sounding earphone.
To my ears, the stage stretches ear-to-ear (not beyond) and has reasonable height, but limited depth forward or backwards. Once again, it's fine and the coherence of all sounds and their placement is good, but there's nothing spectacular going on with the staging and imaging, just a solid, competent rendition of your recordings. (Not necessarily a >$300 rendition though in terms of stage size.)
The ultimate litmus test I always finish with is the question of "Would I buy these?" and the answer this time is no. They're nice. They're fine. They're inoffensive, but they're not stirring the passion and excitement needed to pry the locks and chains off my wallet. If I were about to spend >$300 on an IEM there are a few I'd put before the H-300.
Having said all that, this wonderful hobby of ours is all about personal taste and I'd encourage those who can to take a listen to the H-300s if you like a (mostly) balanced sound, natural and accurate bass that is smooth and deep, and a coherent and well-placed sound image. The H-300s pull off the feat of doing everything quite well, but nothing exceptionally (except perhaps natural, accurate bass) and they leave me uninspired by the whole package despite having huge respect and appreciation for nearly all the individual parts.
I've taken a huge liking to headphones - IEM's in particular. I like the idea of having my own personal PA system that I can take with me anywhere. With Rockbox being in such advanced stages, and such great low-impedance portable amps coming out, you can really seem to get any sound signature you wish out of a portable rig.
Enter, the T-PEOS H300.
Packaging and accessories
The front and back packaging:
The inside has a neat little display window:
It came with the interesting tri-colour cable, as well as a solid black with remote and shirt clip. The remote doesn't have seek buttons, or volume adjustment, just a start-stop. It worked fine with my android device.
A decent amount of tips – you would be surprised how often manufacturers skimp on these.
Includes foamies, olives, and some others. You would be sure to find the right fit here.
And a neat storage pouch:
On the Festival circuit, you might see a few JH metal IEM tins hanging around backstage, with peoples names on them. It's a really nice touch that T-PEOS included this. I move around a fair bit, so strength in portability is really important to me. My Westone ES3X are locked away in a monitor vault, which is always thrown into my toolbag.
The H300 body is made entirely from aluminium and stainless steel. A great mixture, and incredibly lightweight for a hybrid.
The both cables are also incredibly light. I found the black cable to be a little too “rubbery” for me personally. The tri-colour felt a little more solid, but suffered from the same microphonics. Nothing too nasty, but any rubbing or tapping of the cables after the Y-split will result in audible effects.
Overall, a great feel, very lightweight but sturdy. No blaring faults here.
Considering their low weight body and feather-like cables, this is a pretty comfortable experience. I had no problems listening to them at-length (ninety minutes or so at a time).
My girlfriend has tiny little ear canals, and she often has problems with IEMs unless they have a small nozzle. It's worth noting that she found them more tolerable than other wide-nozzle IEMs, but still couldn't wear them for long amounts of time.
Although she is definitely not the average IEM user. I think most people would be fine with the fit of these.
I am a complete basshead.
Also, I really don't subscribe to some of the common techniques people use to summarise sound signatures. I've found that when building and tuning a PA for a live venue there are many things to take into consideration. For my own benefit, I describe my sound signatures differently. The idea that all sound signatures are either “U-SHAPED” or “FLAT” is ridiculous. It's just not that binary. Sound signatures are always far more complicated than this, and I can't help but feel a little dismayed when products get pidgeon-holed into either the “U-SHAPED” or “FLAT” pile. Anyway, enough complaining, back to the review.
Impressive. The H300 is every reason why a hybrid designed IEM is a great idea. My bass tests indicate easy audibility down past 20hz. There is a slight roll-down between 80 to 20hz, but it still remains strong. The Sub-bass response is very flat for an IEM. The sub-bass region is very pronounced, and can produce quite an impact when called upon.
Punchy, detailed, deep. Makes electronic music definitely enjoyable. The bass detail retrieval is quite impressive. Being a dynamic driver, it happily plays with the bass boost functions of my DAP and amp more than most balanced armature drivers can.
Bass-lines are well defined, pronounced, and strong. This is the way a hybrid should be. They seem to have a lot more mid-bass presence than the H200 did, thankfully. I always felt this was an area that the H200 was lacking in. Although, it's been several months since I've heard the H200, so this is not a direct comparison.
Great impact, and no audible bleeding into the midrange. An excellent crossover point.
I don't personally find them too recessed – however, I do find them taking a backseat to the highs a little. The mids are sweet, with high levels of detail and low fatigue. Being a 3-way unit, one can only assume that one of the drivers is dedicated to the mid-range. Usually this is where I pick the crossover frequency between the low and mid drivers – usually in a hybrid this is more obvious – but I'm really struggling to do so with this unit. If I absolutely had to guess, I would assume it's the tiny, almost unnoticicable dip around 200hz before it continues to the rest of the mids.
Well done, T-PEOS, another beautifully performed mid-range. I always found it to be a strong points from products from T-PEOS.
Again, some great detail retrieval here. I know that I'm very sensitive to peaky treble, and I do get a tiny bit of trouble from these on occasion. There are a few key points that stick out to my ears on certain tracks – strangely, I'm finding the peaks around 6.5-9k. Is this where the second and third driver crossover points are, I wonder? The coupling effect can go either way, depending on the EQ technique used to transition between the two BA drivers. Ideally, you would want a slight dip, instead of a peak. This is, however, just hypothesizing.
On some songs, I also had trouble with the 12-14k range. Definitely not a problem with acoustic recordings, but with some electronic music it can be a little sharp.
Overall opinion of sound:
An incredibly wide sound-stage, with pinpoint accuracy. I can't detect channel imbalances, and find the range of these hybrids fantastic. The bass is superb, and is slightly overshadowed by the highs if listening to electronic music at a higher volume.
For classical, orchestral and acoustic music, I'm struggling to think of an IEM that I prefer more.
They have a wide dynamic range, and can scale very well between genres of music.
A superb overall sound, fantastic detail, with an emphasis on both sub-bass and highs, but still plenty of attention given to the mids.
Comfortable, lightweight, well built.
Big thanks to H20Fidelity for loaning me this pair for review.
Pros - Bass, soundstage, transparency, imaging, timbre, details...oh did I mention the KILLER BASS???
Cons - Midrange, comfort when wore straight down, incredibly bright and crisp treble might offend some people
First of all, a big THANK YOU to @svyr and @H20Fidelity for organising this Australian tour. It is much appreciated, and my humble ears are feeling so incredibly honoured to be included in this tour.
This is the third hybrid IEM from T-Peos that I’ve heard, the first one was H-100 which I loved, then H-200 which I don’t really like.
Apologies for the lack of quality of the photos. I have to be honest these are taken late night, with lack of lights, and tired eyes, as I just realised before I sent it off to the next reviewer that I have yet to take some photos
The components that I used for this review are as follows
iPod Classic (straight, and through C&C BH)
Desktop (through Aune T1)
MacBook Air (straight, and through E10)
Packaging and accessories
The packaging of the H-300 is pretty much the standard these days. Hard carton outer, thin carton dividers, and hard foam where the unit itself sits in the box.
Tips wise, you get the black, round, Sony-style silicones with small-ish bore size (S/M/L), grey longer, olive-style silicone with medium bore size (S/M/L), Flat, wide dual-flange silicone with large bore (S/M/L), and a pair of foam. Also in the box is the 6.5mm adaptor and a zip pouch. You also get 2 different cables, black with microphone, and a multi-coloured without a microphone.
Unfortunately none of the included tips give me a good seal, except perhaps the large dual flange (only shallow fit though), so for the purpose of this review, I reach straight for my trusty UE large silicone with large bore, and a pair of Comply TS-200 medium
Build Quaility and Comfort
The body is barrel type, similar to H-200 and DN1k. Feels incredibly solid and can withstand some rough treatments
The weight and the size of the barrel-style body, as well as the non-rounded rear outer body make it rather uncomfortable for me to wear straight down beyond 30+ minutes. Wearing them over ear however, has no problem whatsoever. In fact, it is rather comfortable, despite the rather long strain relief/connector parts. You can fit it deep or shallow; there is minimal difference in the sound, so long as you have a very good seal
Unfortunately, for those of you who has a large and deep canal like I do, none of the included tips will seal well if you wear over ear. I settled with Comply TS-200 at the end, though UE’s large silicone will do the job too, however, I will lose seal if I push it in too deep.
OK so where do I start here? To say the bass is superb, is definitely an understatement. To illustrate how good it is, listen to Beyonce’s new track ‘Partition’, the first time the bass hits about 6 seconds in, right after “Say heeeyy…Ms Carter…” then BOOOMMM!!!...deep rumbles and vibrations fill your head, in fact, right after I received H-300, this was the first track I played, and I almost fell of my chair.
I would say the tuning of the dynamic driver is simply done to almost perfection, and I would go one step further to say that H-300’s bass, extension, impact, depth, and texture, is definitely one of the best, if not the best bass I have heard in an IEM, period. It is hard hitting, thick, and goes incredibly deep down low (down to about 16hz) without any bleed whatsoever to the midrange.
Quantity and impact wise, I would say this is probably borderline bass-head level, with only the most extreme bass-head will demand more. There are only 2 other IEM I’ve heard that output bigger bass than this in quantity; the good old Hippo VB, and Atrio MG7/MG5. Quality wise however, those two are definitely not in the same league.
There aren’t a lot of IEM that I’ve heard and/or own so far possess bass that put a smile on my face every single time, UM Merlin definitely does, UM 3X and Dunu1k do too, but this, this puts a smile so big that my jaw hurts after a while
One thing I didn’t like about H-200 is its upper-mid peaks, and unfortunately it is still present here. Call me softies but upper-mid peaks are something that I am very sensitive in. I do agree that it has improved to some degree compared to H-200, but on some certain type of vocals, and certain tunes/tracks, they are borderline bearable to me. The worst range that I hear is around 9khz – 12khz.
Some vocals feels restrained, like it wants to break out, but couldn’t. Think The Rock (Dwayne Johnson), if he has to wear a small-sized T-Shirt, those guns biceps would want to break free from the cotton (maybe not the best analogy, but you guys get what I mean J). That’s how the midrange and vocals sound to my ear. The multi-coloured cable helps to ease the peaks and strain, to my ear, the midrange sounds better compared to the black-with-mic cable.
Besides that, the midrange also sounds a little recessed/behind the bass and treble. Listening to vocal tracks such as John Legend’s “All of Me”, and Diana Krall’s “Live in Paris” album, their vocals sit behind the instruments. The midrange is rather thin, and not as thick nor as full sounding as DN-1000 or UM 3X.
On the other side of the coin however, the details level are just incredible, especially the micro-details, I am hearing things that I haven’t heard before with other triple hybrids
The treble is…well…quite phenomenal. To be honest I was pretty concerned at the beginning, reading the early reviews and impression, most of which pointed towards “bright and analytical with big bass”, while I have no problem with bright and analytical treble (though in general I prefer the warmer and smoother treble), I do think that most of the “bright and analytical with big bass” IEM I heard so far tend to be sibilant, and the cohesion between the bass and treble is not so good. This however, is nothing like that, the treble itself, clarity, details, and resolution is just absolutely superb.
Cymbals, bells, and high-pitched synthesizers sound exactly the way they should without any distortion whatsoever. I don’t hear any noticeable early roll off in the treble, until after about 14khz before rolling off.
However good the treble is, it’s not without flaws, such power up high can leads to an extreme fatigue. Personally, I am not too sensitive to bright and sparkly treble, and I can listen to it straight for around 2 hours, but then the ear fatigue starting to set in. Treble-head need not worry, however, for those who prefers the darker/warmer signature, this is something to consider before purchasing
Soundstage, Transparency, Imaging, Timbre, and Amping
Soundstage is big, wide, and 3D. It’s not as airy as H3, but it is ever so slightly bigger than DN1k, UM 3X, and AX60
Transparency and Imaging are excellent, in my opinion, this really excels in live music where there are a lot of instrument playing at the same time to really show its ability. Take for example “I Love Being Here With You” from Diana Krall’s Live in Paris, all that instrument playing without any congestion whatsoever, you can picture the expansive stage, and picks out what is playing where, and when, it’s quite sublime really, though unfortunately due to the midrange, when she starts singing she sounds pretty ordinary.
Timbre is also brilliant, tracks such as Jack Johnson’s “What You Thought You Need” and Maroon 5’s “Secret” sound unbelievable. The transparency and imaging are also on show here, as H-300 makes you close your eyes and feel the tunes in your head, just superb.
Amping is not necessary for H-300, to me, it is as good coming straight out of my iPod Classic/MacBook Air, or through C&C BH and Aune T1. While I did not notice any improvement in sound, using an amp does help slightly in improving the fullness of the sound.
Comparison to Other Hybrids
Dunu DN-1000 (Triple Hybrid)
Straight of the bat, overall, Dunu sounds quite dark compared to a very bright H-300. Soundstage is almost on par here, as good as each other; H-300 however, holds the edge in treble and bass. H-300’s treble is a lot crisper, and has better extension, while the bass, well, you know what I feel about H-300’s bass, if not, scroll up a bit
Midrange, to my ear Dunu holds the edge here, it is smoother, more forward, and more detailed, a lot easier on the ear to listen too, and overall less fatiguing. H-300 also holds the edge in timbre and imaging, musical instruments sound a lot natural, especially things like bass guitar and snare drum. Separation and transparency are also on par
Unique Melody 3X (Triple Hybrid)
One of my recent favourite, the 3X’s treble sounds a little veiled and sibilant next to H-300, as well as a little splashier. Midrange is about on par, as both are prone to peaks, though 3X’s peaks are a little easier to my ear. Bass wise, impact, quality, and quantity are also on par, however, H-300’s is more controlled and sounds more natural, as 3X’s bass sounds a little loose next to it. Comfort wise, 3X is a lot more comfortable to wear over long sessions.
Sony H3 (Triple Hybrid)
Another decent triple hybrid with its unique ‘Sony’s house sound’, first of the rank is the bass, Sony’s a little loose, warmer, and not as quick in comparison to H-300’s. Due to the warmth, Sony’s bass could be perceived as slightly thicker and more in-your-face. Impact and extension wise, H-300 has the upper hand here.
Moving on to the midrange, H3’s is smoother without any peaks, however, it is much more recessed, little veiled, and not as detailed. However restrained the vocals with H-300, with H3 the vocals sound further and more distant, again, H-300 holds the edge here
Treble wise, both of them have similar extension and detail level, though H3 is grainier, and H-300’s is crisper and slightly brighter
Rooth LSX5 (Five-drivers Hybrid. Universal)
Straight away, H-300 sounds incredibly bright and piercing compared to the much warmer LSX5, before I auditioned H-300, I always thought that LSX5 is rather bright, but, after a week with H-300, going back to LSX5, I do feel a little bit of ‘comfort’, especially from the highly energetic treble.
In the bass department, H-300’s has bigger impact, larger soundstage, thicker, and longer decay, while LSX5’s goes down slightly deeper, quicker and sounds a bit more natural. Midrange wise, there is no competition here, LSX5’s is a lot easier on the ear, smoother, thicker, and sounds fuller. Though LSX5’s is a little bit peaky in some tunes, the peaks are nowhere as ‘annoying’ as H-300.
Moving on to treble, LSX’s extends further and overall is warmer and smoother, though it requires bigger power to drive it.
I was pretty sceptical about this before I even hear it. The fact that I don’t really like its predecessor, H-200, plays a lot in my mind, as well as most of the impressions from the first few reviewers which pointed this towards a very bright IEM. After I received my turn, all my worries, concerns, and doubts were simply wept away
Almost everything is done close to perfection; from treble and bass, to separation, imaging, details, tonality, and timbre, all are top notch. It’s really hard to fault it, though to my ear, the midrange is its weakest point, and could be the deal breaker for mid-centric people. Something to improve in H-400 perhaps?
I have to applaud T-Peos here in creating something that is very close to a ‘masterpiece’, at $300 MSRP, this is one of the ‘must-have’ IEM of 2014. I have no doubt that if there is a ‘Hall of Fame’ of IEMs/headphones, this will no doubt be the first few inductees.
Pros - Great Bass Response, Superb Clarity, Imaging, and Detail, Wide Soundstage
Cons - Lower-Treble Peak can be too harsh for some...
T-PEOS is back with their new flagship hybrid! The H-300 is getting heaps of mixed impressions from everyone who got their hands on them during the pre-sale promotion. Some ended up selling theirs in a few days, others are still figuring out if it’s a keeper, while a handful of people claim that they sound really good! My first impression of them was great that I ended up selling my beloved H-200. That is really a drastic move considering how much I value the H-200, my favourite IEM for heavy metal. Whether I'll end up regretting my decision or rejoice that I’ve finally bought myself a pair H-300 will be revealed at the end of this review. Special thanks to Kwon Sungoo and T-PEOS for making the Australian H-300 Demo Tour happen and @H20Fidelity for facilitating this.
Using the stock coloured cable + Comply TS200 foam tips.
BASS: WOW! WOW! WOW! I love the bass on these. Goes deep, with just enough sub-bass rumble that doesn’t linger too long with its decay. Punch may not be as hard hitting as the H-200 but it definitely has enough impact coupled with speed to keep you happy with your EDM and Metal favourites. Bass heads may not find this their ideal bass monster but the quantity is at a level where it can’t be ignored. Detail is the best I’ve heard so far… enough to make me forget the Astrotec AX-60 and KEF M200. Containing all that detail will need a lot of speed to avoid congestion and the H-300 delivers no matter what genre you use to put it to the test. It seems like all the boxes in the bass department are ticked; but wait, there’s more: TIMBRE! Bass that sounds so natural that it just keeps you wanting for more!
MIDS: At first I was like: dang! it’s a bit recessed... thanks to the emphasised lower treble, the mid-range gets left behind because that's just how it is with v-shaped sound signatures. Fortunately, only the vocals are greatly affected; making them sound a bit contained and weird like there's a very thin veil over them (not from the bass but from the treble). Despite the restrained vocals, instruments still sound excellent; full and rich especially when you listen at high volume levels to bring up the mid-range. Detail, timbre, and clarity is amongst the best I’ve heard. When volume matched, the mid-range is almost as good as the Noble 4. Yes ladies and gentlemen, pretty close to Noble 4! Now why would I get to that conclusion when the H-300 vocals sound a bit restrained? The answer is in the next section...
HIGHS: Oh how I wish this ended differently. The treble although not as extended as the Sony MH1 is still great because the roll-off is only noticeable beyond 14 kHz. Resolution is exemplary in the H-300; you get to hear micro-detail you’d normally miss with most average IEMs. Unfortunately, I hear a peak from 7 kHz to 10 kHz and its severity will depend on how the track is mixed/mastered. Reminds me of the Astrotec AX-60 but the H-300 is more refined and detailed. Tracks from artists such as Daft Punk, Avicii, Earth Wind & Fire, and Dream Theater don’t get sibilant at all. What’s disappointing is that it’s quite common to have bright sounding tracks in one’s library. Artists such as Van Halen, The Used, Train, Phil Collins, and Chicago can be too much for someone’s tolerance to cymbals shimmer or vocal sibilance. The peak also affects timbre and as a result cymbals sound a bit too thin for my liking.
Now here’s the kicker… if you can somehow get rid of that extra shimmer, edginess, and aggressiveness from the peak between 7 kHz and 10 kHz, the H300 can stand amongst the best out there. As a matter of fact, it sounds near perfect to my preference when the peak is tamed a bit. With the treble peak reduced, vocals will no longer sound restrained, cymbals will ring naturally, and clarity is better than ever. I’d be hard pressed to choose between the H-300 and Noble 4 because they compliment each other really well. Reducing the peak can be done in several different ways: one can use foam filter mod as a damper or do the old fashion EQ tweak. My preference is about 7db reduction from 7 kHz to 9 kHz which can easily be done with Parametric EQ or to a certain degree with foam filter mod + Comply TS200/TSX200. Just enough to get rid of the harshness without changing the tonality of the H-300.
IMAGING AND SOUNDSTAGE: Soundstage is really wide and can easily keep up against the Dunu DN-1000. Height is above average with sufficient depth yet not as expansive as the DN-1000. Imaging is excellent coupled with instrument placement that’ll immerse you into the music. Such an excellent presentation that can sound like its coming from a decent full-sized headphone.
CONCLUSION: So what does clarity, resolution, natural timbre, amazing bass, nice mid-range, and peaky lower treble compound into? It’s T-PEOS H-300: the could’ve been! It could’ve been one of THE BEST out there if not for the peaky treble. T-PEOS is getting there and hopefully will close the gap to perfection when they release their next flagship: H-400 maybe? For now I’m happy with the H300 but not rejoicing... not just yet.
Pros - Amazing low end clarity and punch, replaceable cable+mic cable, monitor like mids detail, extended and clear highs. versatile. isolation and comfort
Cons - 7-8-9k peak, relatively dry mids, mid-bass impact less than h200, no chin guard on remote cable, cable noise on remote cable. isolation and comfort
First off, I'd like to thank Sunggoo from T-PEOS for making the tour possible and H20Fidelity for running the australian tour .
I'll skip the company history and packaging section that H20Fidelity,jonyoo have covered very well.
I do agree T-PEOS have come a long way and as always look forward to hearing their future products. I wasn't a big fan of H100, but liked H200 enough after EQing.
Likewise - you can find the presale link in the H300 sponsor thread
Please refer to the FR chart if you want
You can find some pictures of H200,H300 and some other IEMs here
The build does feel premium compared to the H200. it looks like as per the brochure, http://moby1.cafe24.com/web/upload/h-300_final_en.jpg the markings are all laser etched (nb fr chart there is not the final one as per above). On h200 they were painted and the paint rubbed off to the housing body.
For H300, I'm a bit sceptical about the the overall body build quality, as I'm the first tour member, and it already has slight markings on the painted (polished alu?)looking bits (small dents and scratches). I'm curious what they'll look like @ end of tour in 10+ weeks.
While the look is nice and understated and suggests high quality, it's not on part with Dita the answer's milled alu housing.
I do like the tip selection, although there could be more DF/TF, and different foam ones.
Likewise - I'm a very big fan of the replaceable cable and remote cable being included.
It's a huge thing to be able to use your Ipod or android phone as a source without taking it out of your pocket, at least for me.
I do like the ergonomics on the multicolored cable, however for the remote cable I get too much cable noise.
A person in the appreciation thread asked if he'd run with it. I wouldn't with the black mic cable (you can hear it when walking).
Maybe T-PEOS should have kept it a clothed cable like with H200 mic remote cable.
Not a huge fan of the color selection on the multicolored cable without the remote either.
Wearing H300 over the ear makes it a bit better but the right one refuses to sit in my ear when worn that way. (I not the least it moves it a bit away from your clothes, but if you wear a jacket, you're not going to like the cable from the ysplit bumping the collar) . When worn over the ear, a sharp feeling part cuts into my left ear.
While on the subject of cables, I like the round IEM side plugs more, but I don't think the stem needed to be any longer as it makes wearing them over the ear even more problematic for me.
I also don't like the cables not staying flush in the IEM housing. for me they slide out slightly all the time. I don't know why.
Overall the comfort is ok and isolation is 'decent' (but I liked DN-1000 better in both respects, even h200 more when worn down, but you guys probably won't all like the h200 oval ridge). I have no trouble getting a seal with large enough silicon tips.
Couldn't use their foam ones but the comply Tx500 fit it well.
V-shaped, with a monitor type quality to the mids, amazing sub-bass and bass focused (less mid-bass impact than usual) and a lot of treble in the 7-10k area.
I'd recommend eqing down treble at 8khz by 4db at q=1.5. Comply tips alone don't fix it for me.
After EQing, for me they become a lot more ultra-clear-but-present-bass-monitor-like overall
As H20Fidelity remarked, they sound a lot like FA DBA-02 would with a very nice dynamic driver (DD) attached. I do agree with that having owned DBA-02v1 and v2.
If you followed the H300 thread you will have seen the prototype having rolled-off extension but not that peaked overall treble. People were unhappy.
I think T-PEOS had to bump it up to compensate as per the FR chart they gave us. I probably agree it was the right decision but it comes at a price.
If you listen to a lot music where there is already a lot of 7-10k (not like on 'The Answer', with some tips, where there's controlled extra bite there, the but 'excess treble shelf' kind)
e.g. on certain modern rap, or maybe dance/trance/pop AND definitely much of metal it will become a problem on a few songs.
That peak will shift depending on the insertion depth, for me it lands at about 8k (if you have a player where you can vary, q,c,dB e.g. rockbox , give it a go).
A member in the thread remarked it's nearly fixed with comply tips. for me - it's not . by far.
The good news is - if you have a player with a treble tone control or good user EQ, you can fix it. For rockbox advanced eq for 8khz by 4db at q=1.5. fixed it very well for me. I lent H300 for half a day to a work colleague, who used the treble control on ipod nano quite well too.
After eqing it down I think it sounds extended, bright enough and detailed (I do like it more than H200 that also had 'an interesting 9k peak, or DN1000, that's borderline too bright without EQ for me)
As many have remarked, the mids are a bit 'monitor like'. Not lush and forward. At the same time the clarity is phenomenal. Both male and female vocal sounds exceedingly realistic on these.
You can also feel the slight upper mids biased tilt, but I don't think it's a bad idea to tune it that way
The lower mids certainly feel less forward than on DN1000 or H-200, the upper mids feel less forward than DN1000, but more forward than H200 (h200 had that giant cross-over related dip there).
Would I necessarily want more forward mids on H300, - I wouldn't say so, I think this mids tuning flavour with have its fans.
(and yes, the mids wipe the floor with d1000 and h200)
This is my favourite bit.
H200 had a lot of impact in the sub-bass and sounded rather nice and full there. (the funny thing is - without comparing to H300, the H200 bass felt 'fast' as well )
In comparison, H300 is a lot faster and feels like it has less of a mid-bass boost. I'd be very very very interested to see a CSD (time decay ) plot for H300 re-bass speed. I'm curious if it's just the gradient of sub-bass,bass and mid-bass, or also the relative decay times.
To me it sound like H20Fidelity described it - every bass note - for drums is separate and impactful, and bass guitar sound very crisp (it's faster than H200 or Lear BD4.2)
If you get a pair - try your favourite pop https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pco91kroVgQ&feature=kp or your favourite Dubstep https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aHjpOzsQ9YI or hip-hop. You'll be very pleasantly surprised
I don't necessarily hear the 'amazing 3d soundstage' (H20 ) but the stereo width is good, and the depth is decent too. It is indeed better than H200, but not as diffuse as DN-1000 or Dita the Answer, although I'd say instrument separation is better on H300 (and the sound field feels more natural on it too)
In the case of H300, I think, most likely what we're hearing is the mids detail and slightly tame mids tuning, coupled with bass speed and impact and (let's go with eqed ) highs extension and detail give it a very nice depth feel. Have I frequently heard that anywhere else - probably not. Moreover, it also sounds like a coherent package to me.
I'm really looking forward to my trade in (ltd time only) H200->H300 arrival. I can't get enough of these on most of the music I listen to and H300 do sound special in many ways (mids detail, separation, bass) and are so far my overall favourite IEMs, not only in the sub $300 price bracket. I look forward comparing it to DN-2000
Pros - Immediately impressive lows; Exceedingly transparent and resolving mids; Resolving and aggressive highs. Great soundstage + separation.
Cons - Some moderate 8-9K sibilance. Somewhat thin sounding mids.
Despite a couple "flaws," what it does right, it does amazingly well. I would wager it competes very favorably in the company of > ~$250 range IEMs. More details found in the impressions thread.
This is not a full-blown review. I just wanted to add a rating and justify it.
Value (4.5/5): Offers more quality than I was expecting for the pre-sale price.
Audio Quality (4.5/5): I would give audio quality a full 5 if not for the 8-9k spike. Not going to detract for sound sig preferences.
Design (5/5): Love the refined look and finish (it doesn't scream for attention), detachable cables, sturdy housing, assortment of tips and accessories.
Comfort (4.5/5): I think these have a bit of weight to them in the ear, and I've felt some soreness during extended wear (3+ hours). Otherwise, a comfy and secure in my ears.
Isolation (4.5/5): Good isolation both coming in and going out. Low microphonic noise contribution.
Pros - Clarity throughout the whole range, bass extension
Cons - Peak in the highs (8KHz region), slight sibilance, microphonics
Firstly, I want to start off by thanking T-Peos for providing me with the H-300 for reviewing and testing. I have to admit the beta version before mass production got me confused and disappointed but the revised version, I am much more happy. I really respect the way T-Peos is always trying to find out and provide what the people want to hear and I can tell they are putting in a lot of effort. I also want to thank T-Peos for considering the opinions of many head-fiers overseas although their main target is for people here in Korea.
T-Peos began their brand in March of 2013 under a micro-speaker research and development company called SWP Shinwoo Electronics which was established in 1986. They started the in-ear product business in April of 2012 and currently have an impressive range of dynamic and hybrid in-ears. On average, they have been releasing a new product every 2 months, developing a product in half a year which takes most companies a full year. The only thing I understand from this is that they are working twice as hard.
Last summer, I was on my annual leave visiting Busan, Korea and was able to try out their first hybrid, H-100, at a Kyobo Bookstore. Usually, I never really try out any brands that I haven't heard of but something caught my eye when the description said hybrid. This was the first hybrid I tried out and it was a jaw-dropping experience. Immediately, I took interest in all of T-Peos' products and when I got home, purchased the H-200 right away without even doing any research about it.
After the H-100, H-200, H-100J, the H-300 is the fourth in-ear in their hybrid lineup and about a week ago they had their first double dynamic single ba hybrid released, H-150. After the H-200, it is their second 3-way hybrid. The H-300 was developed from the feedback of many users from the H-200. Their aim was to fix the flaws such as the dip in the mids, tighten the bass, get rid of the muddiness in the highs and to create a new standard for the hybrid in-ear market. T-Peos has received a lot of praise on the clarity of their in-ears and it seems that the H-300 has made them a lot more worthy of that praise.
Driver: Single dynamic for low, single ba for mids, single ba for highs
Max power: 100mW
Frequency Range: 20Hz~20KHz
In their product description in Korean they say that they brag of the quality and naturalness of treble that the H-300 produces as well as it's enlarged soundstage.
I will start this review commenting on the sound because I know that's the part everybody's mostly interested in.
Source: HTC One -> Poweramp, Mac Pro -> Cog
Songs used for testing: (all in flac except for one or two which are in 320kbps)
Owl City - Cave In
Panic! At the Disco - Vegas Lights
Skrillex - Dirty Vibe
Taylor Swift - Breathe
Nell - Fantasy
Copeland - Choose the One Who Loves You More
Armin Van Buuren - Pulsar
Boys II Men - Four Seaons of Lonliness
Fourplay - Bali Run
Jason Derulo - Marry Me
Fun. - Some Nights
Coldplay - Swallowed in the Sea
Kelly Clarkson - Catch My Breath
-Bass (Below 125Hz)
I was always impressed with the bass from every in-ear from T-Peos starting from the $10 dynamic one to the hybrid before the H-300, the H-100J. Bass is something they never did wrong so I already knew it was going to be amazing. None of the T-Peos products are considered a basshead in-ear but I feel that it could always appeal to any bass lover and on the H-300 it got better. People in here in Korea said the bass in the H-200 was loose and was over-emphasized so the quantity of bass is less than the H-200 but is definitely controlled and tighter. A little tweaking in the EQ and you can get that sub-bass rumble "club feel" and it makes any EDM genre fun to listen to. I listen to a lot of club music while on the subway to and back from work and it really felt like I was in a club. When I got on the subway listening to my rumbling club music, it was packed with people so I could barely move (as it always is in a Korean club) and they all had their hands up (although they were holding on to the over head hand bars). Only if the lights were a little dimmed down, there would be no difference lol. I'm not saying that it always sounds like this but I'm saying that it could easily sound like this if you wanted it to. The bass is tight with a natural amount of impact as it needs to be in rock genres and it can also have that deep BOOOOOM rumble that's in a lot of electronic music (although this is a little better in the H-200 imo). It does not overpower the mids or the highs and comes across with amazing texture and depth. I can not find anything negative to say about the bass and I never have with any of their products. If I were to change it, I would like a bit more impact on the kick but other than that I wouldn't want to take away or add anything else.
Although the mids are a lot more full on the H-300 than the H-200, I was able to notice some flaws. The fullness in the mids coming from instruments were done nicely and I liked the way they came across but I felt the vocals were slightly veiled and dry especially in the lower vocal range (I do have a tendency to like very vocal forward sounds). I felt a slight dip in the 1KHz region and it sounded like the vocals had no firm foundation when lacking in the lower range of their voice. However, sounds of synthesizers and electric guitars were expressed with excellent tonation and color. The sustain and reverb expressed on the toms coming from the lower mids give an a wonderful sense of space and made genres like indie rock listening a lot more enjoyable.
-Highs (Above 4.5KHz)
This is where I felt it was the most different from the H-200. If you felt the amount of treble on the H-200 just right, then you will find the H-300 too bright and maybe a bit sharp. The highs on the H-300 lean towards the upper highs and their I noticed that there was a peak somewhere near the 8KHz region that can cause some sharpness and sibilance. With female vocals like Taylor Swift I was able to hear some sibilance but with some female vocals like Kelly Clarkson, I wasn't able to find any. I guess it depends more on the mastering and vocal tone. After a week of burning into my ears I found myself quite satisfied with the treble. The overall treble was just so clear and refreshing with the amount of air it had in it. The details and texture in the snare, high hat and ride cymbal made the rhythm music come alive and it just makes any band music more fun. After listening to the H-300 and trying the H-200 again, the treble did sound a bit muddy.
-Separation and Soundstage
Instrument separation was improved and had a larger soundstage than the H-200. Being a lot more clear in the mids and highs, it is easier to hear and notice the special characteristics of each instrument. Soundstage is larger but isn't on the impressive side with being very wide.
So is it an upgrade from the H-200?
For everyone, this will be different because it depends on what you consider an upgrade. I do consider it an upgrade because it is able to produce a sound with a resolution that sounds more expensive than the H-200. How can I put it...the overall sound signature just sounds more rich. Luxurious? haha.
The boxing is not as nice as the H-200 with it's hard case.
-Set of black silicone tips and grey silicone tips
-1/4" gender jack
-Cable clip (exactly the same as the one that comes with sony xba series)
-Non-mic cable (color coded)
-Soft zipper pouch
I liked the accessories of the H-200 better as it came with foam tips and the bottom half of the mic cable was not made of rubber but some kind of nylon fabric. The zipper pouch also seems to be made of some kind of nylon fabric and it is very well cushioned inside. It's a lot nicer than that stiff fake leather pouch thing that came with the H-200.
The H-300 like the H-200, are built like a tank with a steel and aluminum housing. It looks and feels really strong. However, there is nothing special to the design and falls behind on aesthetic quality. It just looks like a cylinder chunk of grey metal. It is quite heavy as well so it may weigh down a little inside the ears. As for comfort, there is nothing that feels uncomfortable when inside the ears although it has a lot of microphonics no matter what tips or cable you apply. There is a lot less with foam tips however but you will have to get those separately. Although you could wear them over and behind the ears, it would be a lot better if they were ergonomically designed that way since there is a bit of microphonics and weight to these.
*H-300 left, H-200 right
*H-300 left, H-200 right
Well to conclude, it seems that T-Peos is on the right track. The H-300 are a one of a kind. They have been doing this business for less than 2 years and already they have created such a fine line up with adding the H-300 to it. I am impressed. If they were invest a little more in the product design, I'm sure that they would receive a lot more public attention. I strongly believe that not just the H-300 but many of their products can easily challenge top tier IEMs that cost twice three times their price range and they have a unique charm in it's sound that has me mesmerized and wanting to try every single product they make. My expectations for the H-300 were great and now I have even more expectations for the hybrids to come in the future. I'm not sure what will come out next but I have heard rumors of a 4-way hybrid and I feel like a little kid who just can't wait for his parents to bring home his Christmas present.
I just want to thank T-Peos again for this opportunity for providing me with not just the H-300 but many others like the H-100J, DD-200 and a couple other lower end dynamic driver in-ears. It was my honor to test/review them and I hope you will become a greater company with greater products which many people from all around the world will appreciate and respect!
*SPC cable was purchased separately from T-Peos. They are both compatible with the H-200 and H-300.
Feel free to ask me any questions concerning the H-300 or any other T-Peos product and I will try my best to answer you asap
Cons - Maybe a little bright for some, packaging could be a little more fancy.
I must admit It's been quite a journey with the company T-PEOS since I tried their H-100 going way back to October - 2012. Since then I've heard most of T-PEOS mid tier line up including H-200 hybrid released around March - 2013 which grabbed quite the attention on Head-Fi and probably for good reason as it scored notably high in some reviews other than mine. I still rate H-200 one of the better hybrids for the price range, under $300. The features including detachable cables with consumer friendly price was most welcomed from T-PEOS.
Moving onto March - 2014, we meet again with T-PEOS brand new H-300 hybrid, lets see if T-PEOS set the bench even higher with their new 3 way hybrid, I think they have indeed but with a different flavor and although the unit isn't perfect it's very close. I must report the unit I have wasn't a review sample, I paid pre sale price of $250 USD + $20 USD shipping. There is one other H-300 unit coming to Australia for a Head-fi members tour so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for those impressions and reviews arriving soon.
H-300 is a 3 way hybrid design which consists of dual balanced armatures for the mids and highs and a separate dynamic driver to handle the lows. Up until a few years ago hybrids were far and few between however most recently we're really seeing them come into the spot light, with the likes of AKG, Dunu, Tralucent, Rhapsodio, Aurisonics, Sony, just to name a few bringing out some inspiring hybrid designs.
Specs and Features: - Aluminum and stainless steel sus303 body
- Covered flaw of H-200 and strengthened bass more
- Attached detachable cable with 2.5mm DC jack connector
( compatible with H-200 ) Specification: -Driver Units : Double Balanced Armature & Dynamic Driver
- Impedance : 22 Ohm / 1 kHz
- Sensitivity : 105 dB / 1 kHz
- Power : 100 mW (Max.)
- Frequency Response : 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz
- Connectors & Plugs : 2.5mm DC Jack Connector and
3.5mm / 24k Gold Plated L-Type Plug
- Cable : Non-PVC Detachable Cable with Microphone & Non- PVC Detachable Cable with 3 Pole Plug
- Weight : 16g Accessories : - Carry Pouch
- Foam Tips & Ear Tips
- Extra Cable with 3 Pole Plug
- 6.5mm Audio Adapter Please note: Because there's going to be a head-fi members tour for H-300 which will take about 3 months to complete with a full 10 members participating this review will be shorter then ones usually found by myself as I believe I am only person with one opinion. As I said in my H-200 review the full decision of H-300 becoming a worthy competitor lies in the hands of members. I believe H-300 has what it takes to become popular personally just like H-200 did before it.
T-PEOS have been known to outfit their packaging and H-300 is no exception, although we're no longer greeted with the popular wooden storage box once found in the original H-100, instead a consumer friendly approach similar to H-200's packaging last year. It seems many companies have adopted an open box experience similar to Beats Tour or the Monster line up, I found similar in Dunu DN-1000 hybrid packaging. As you can see in the photo, theirs little inserts for the IEM and a foam lined inner carton.
Here's a series of photos showing an unboxing:
Now we've finally reached the bottom of the box lets see what's inside. Firstly, you're greeted with a much larger carry case than previously found on H-200, does anyone remember the rather under sized storage case that came with H-200? Well I do, it was something many people mentioned being to small for even storing H-200 inside. T-PEOS have listened bringing us a considerably bigger carry case with a zipper feature which easily stores not only H-300 but all the accessories to boot. Inside there isn't a second sleeve or pocket for placing tips in although the extra dimensions this time round more than welcome. Great to see!
There's an assortment of tips including those popular red foam tips seen with H-200 accessories and silicon tips of various sizes (S/M/L). There's also a rather large shirt clip that works well along with one 6.3mm adapter for those who like using their H-300 in a home environment or with home amplifiers.
Moving forward to the earphones themselves you have two cables, one mic cable / one non mic. I'm rather intrigued by the spectrum color coding on the non mic cable, still lets get back to the mic cable for a minute. I haven't been able to test the controls, however there is only one button and a mic present, I have no idea if this works with both Apple and Andriod. Moving on If you have a close look at the connectors this time round, T-PEOS have changed the design from square plugs previously found on H-200 cables to round. I have no strategy what the reason for this was though it seems to operate just as well.
The detachable cables and housings are backwards compatible with any H-200 cable/housing, a slight push followed by a light click can be heard when pushing the connector in. I will say when removing the cable please be careful, do so in two part process. Hold the housing carefully in one hand then pull the plug delicately with a little twist, it should come out about 3mm, after that's done moderately pull the cable away from the housing. Never clean jerk the plug continuously from the housing, slowly and discreetly is your friend. Each cable is terminated with a right angle jack basically identical to that found on H-200. Microphonics are present slightly on both cable and they can be worn over the ear without a problem.
Build / Fit:
H-300 housings are constructed entirely from aluminum and stainless steel, each housing weighs a miniature 4.5grams, (with cable attached) which is terribly light for a hybrid design, they weigh much less compared to Dunu DN-1000 at 7.5grams, you really feel the difference when wearing them too.
How T-PEOS managed to keep the net weight down I don't know except they sure have made one of the lightest hybrids I've held in my hand which is almost entirely un- felt after a short period wearing them. You can also see they have lost the ring fit guide previously present on H-200. At first glance you would presume the housing are rather lengthy which is correct they're indeed longer than H-200 by a few millimeters however they do something very handy for your user experience when wearing them which I will explain. Each nozzle is the standard size so after market tips fit no problem.
I think the housings have quite an executive appearance to them, quite the business man approach. Sleek and user friendly for a majority.
When wearing the housings they angle backwards towards the outer edge of your ear, if you see this diagram the rear of the housing locks into the section of my ear highlighted, if you feel with your finger there's almost a little cavity there, this stops H-300 moving around keeping it considerably secure for me. I really like the way the housing seats into the ear staying put. I have no problems walking, or jumping. T-Peos
seem to have used the human anatomy for H-300 fitting implementation. It works quite well and hopefully for you too.
(For those wondering, no that is not me in the photo)
Isolation and insertion depth:
H-300 don't require a deep insertion, it's rather shallow to medium, isolation is only average but far sufficient to cut out most outside noise. You won't be producing anywhere near Etymotics isolation levels though more than adequate for outside use. I actually find H-300 very comfortable, tips fit snugly, the way that housing locks in really amounts to them feeling secure. It's high fives all round for the design, build, and present usability of H-300. I have encountered no driver flex with this pair, none.
H-300 takes a different transformation to the earlier H-200, the tonality being a fraction bright cool and very clean, there's absolutely no veil what so ever, it sounds rather lean compared to something like TF10 or H-200, and edges closer towards the tonality found on my Rhapsodio RDB Mini hybrid. This is good thing for most listeners as the clarity just melts on through with ease, H-300 really is very clean, highly transparent hybrid, if you've ever heard a DBA-02 and can imagine a dynamic driver supporting the low end you have close to what H-300's tonality sounds like. Those who prefer warmth may need a slight adjustment period, though I can assure you it's well worth the time.
To be quite frank the dynamic driver used on H-300 is some of the best bass I've heard period, on any hybrid or IEM even some passing the $600 mark. it leans more towards the neutral side of things but has wonderful speed, texture and clarity, you can effortlessly hear each bass note well defined and separated from the spotless mid. there's very little if any mid bass bloat and no bleed, just tight, spotless clean low end detail. The bass on H-300 was one of the first things to jump out at me, like I'd been missing something in my music all this time. it really has taken my expectations to a new level. The way you can hear each bass note executing bouncing onto the next and the actual shaping of each note is by far close to the best I've heard besides possibly Tralucents revised 1Plus2, and that's big call considering some of the gear I've heard.
H-300's mid range is airy, clean, transparent and as we've spoken about a touch bright with very generous detail extraction levels far above that of H-200 and leaving IEM like the Dunu DN-1000 behind sounding remarkably pure and coherent, I hate to say it but H-300 does start edging into detail levels my $650 hybrid can reach. The mids are a fraction recessed, I can hear vocals sitting a little further back however it sits in well with the signature. Because of the transparency and refinement the ability to hear samples on the left/center/right channels during busy passages is almost effortless and slow passages the hybrid doesn't even need to think about it.
For example when you listen to an acoustic track you will often hear guitars playing in the background or off to the back left, often with many IEM's you can hear these somewhat but not imaging very clearly, meaning they tend to get lost in the background or smear, what H-300 does is make every sample come into the spotlight, you can pick out instruments at ease following their riffs. it's mainly due to the high level of transparency. Clarity levels are right up there and surpass H-200 and Dunu DN-1000 quite easily, as is the micro detailing, you can pick out little nooks and crannies on songs many other IEM in the price range smear or don't uncover. I have however found a little bit of vocal sibilance if you push them really hard though the way this hybrid is tuned to be lean, you really get a good listening session at lower volumes, you don't need to crank them up to enjoy them.
If I had to sum up the mid-range in a few key words they would be: Transparency, Detail, Clarity, Airy, Cool (fraction bright)
As we move up to the highs, they're well detailed with good extension, and contribute to the airy mid range, it's not what I'd call hot treble though certainly a little hotter than H-200 or the DN-1000, for my preferences, the high end is just about right for me, it can sometimes get a little hot on some tracks though it never pushes that boundary where it treads to far out and spikes you. I do think some people may find it a little peaky in sections, it could be a touch smoother however considering the rest of the presentation it sits in well. I want to get some more members impressions on the treble and we'll get some answers from the tour members, but I cannot detect any glaring faults.
Excellent separation. As we've spoken about the mids transparency. When working in conjunction with the instrument separation that's partly why we're hearing samples so clearly, the separation on a technical level is again approaching levels my Rhapsodio RDB Mini can achieve and really isn't a force to be reckoned with, one of H-300 real strong points. It makes many other IEM I have heard in this price range sound like a toy. (yes Westone I'm looking at you) I think it's a sure sign T-PEOS have spared nothing for H-300 on a technical level.
Again, H-300's soundstage reaches widths that are close to excelling Dunu DN-1000 Hybird and already bettering my RDB Mini, it has good depth and height to boot but the best thing about this is H-300 has a rather magical trick up it's sleeve coming across as very 3D, something DN-1000 has a certain aspect of but not to this extend. When a song often busts into the chorus and many instruments start playing the stereo imaging bursts outwards from the left/right channels, almost like they form a kind of hologram around the stage, when you add this with the transparency, clarity and slightly bright tonality it can be almost instant eargasm with the right tracks., it's rather impressive to hear and I really hope others find the same thing.
What you have here in H-300 is a rather cool sounding hybrid with high transparency levels a wonderful soundstage and far above detail levels it's price suggests, then to boot a very capable dynamic driver downstairs. Now it's not perfect, it can exhibit some vocal sibilance if you push them hard though not terrible needs a mention, and please note the mid range is a touch recessed however I think what this hybrid does right is really a no brainier for people looking to purchase.
For me to say H-300 has technical levels on similar standards to my $650 hybrid is a big call but something I really think H-300 pulls off. The soundstage and transparency is genuinely quite magical to listen to, and I highly recommend giving H-300 a try. As I say in my reviews I'm only one person and the members will judge H-300 in it's entirety, though for me, It's an instant keeper and will be staying in my collection for some time. It has already brought me many fun listening sessions and will do so for many more to come.
I'd like to thank T-PEOS for putting the tuning effort in with this one, it really has paid off.